Chemo Tips 101

The following checklist and tips was created to guide those undergoing chemo with ideas and suggestions on helpful things to bring during chemo day including tips on how to prepare for chemo day.  It was compiled by The Lymphoma Club and used with permission to share with newly diagnosed cancer patients.

Suggested items to bring with you during chemo (Put small items in a tote bag or back-pack and other items leave in car ):

  1. An advocate, family or friend to hold your hand and be there for you
  2. Portable notebook/laptop to help pass the time
  3. iPad/iPod or Kindle
  4. Portable DVD player – favorite movies
  5. Favorite music
  6. Books/Magazines – pen/pencils
  7.  A small notebook to take notes
  8. A list of all your current medications
  9. Extra cotton t-shirt or change of shirt – preferably v-neck for women (for port access)
  10. Sweater/layers and sweats (be comfortable)
  11. Bottled water (very important to stay well hydrated)
  12. Sugarless candy (good to suck on before the heparin or chemo)
  13. An insulated lunch bag with snacks – important to eat a light meal  before chemo
  14. Travel size pillow (for comfort)
  15. Travel size blanket (cancer center may be cold)
  16. Soft toothbrush and travel size toothpaste
  17. Alcohol free mouth wash like Biotene (check with doctor or nurse)
  18. Alcohol-free sanitizers or towelettes
  19. Kleenix/tissue
  20. Paper Towels
  21. Chapstick
  22. Lotion
  23. Popsicles or ice cubes (to prevent mouth sores)
  24. A plastic bag for laundry or in case of nausea
  25. Small bucket to keep in car (in case of nausea emergency)
  26. A cooler for food and snacks, include extra for caregiver
  27. Small first aid kit
  28. A cooler to keep in car with cold water (optional)
  29. Pictures of favorite destinations, family and friends to keep you focused and motivated
  30. Anything inspirational to you
  31. Your doctor’s phone number or possibly nurse (obtain after-hours phone number too)

Chemo Tips and Suggestions

Stay well hydrated

Rest when tired

Track and report side effects to doctor

Reduce stress (as much as possible)

5.    Dress comfortable (loose, comfortable clothing)

  1. Stock up on items you need
  2. Eat a light, fiber meal a couple hours before treatment to minimize nausea
  3. Ask questions about the drug and what it’s for
  4. Have a supportive person nearby
  5. Allow for fatigue and recovery
  6. Keep a list of all medications and be sure doctor has a copy
  7. Have somebody check up on you after treatment. Know the warning signs of adverse chemical reactions.
  8. Buy a digital thermomater
  9. Never take supplements, vitamins, herbs or related WITHOUT checking with your oncologist/doctor, as it may interfere with treatment.

Other Suggestions:

Visit the dentist before you start chemo to ensure your teeth and gums are healthy

Credited to The Lymphoma Club